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"Am I Strong Enough to Love?"

Our newest episode of the podcast returned to helping men realize their true identity in Christ so they can love their families, thanks to the scriptural insights of Jose Pulido.

Later in the episode, we got a jump on the Barbenheimer craze by reviewing Inception, from Oppenheimer director Christopher Nolan. Also check out our May discussion of Lady Bird, an early film by Barbie director Greta Gerwig.

NFP Week

Natural Family Planning Week 2023 was the last full week in July, but it's not too late to learn more about this important, morally consistent set of methods that help couples either conceive a child or avoid having more children than they can reasonably raise.

Bishop Barron spoke about the importance of this campaign and, after the FDA's approval of over-the-counter contraception (see Updates below), it's just as important as ever to emphasize the loving way of living out marriage as "one flesh, given and received", in line with the Eucharistic Revival.

World Youth Day

Over 28,000 pilgrims are gathering in Lisbon as the American delegation of World Youth Day, along with Bishop Barron and 60 other bishops from the US. “This is a wonderful occasion for young adults to have a significant encounter with Jesus Christ in the company of the universal Church," Bishop Barron said.

He continued, "it is also a moment when the Holy Father and the Church’s leadership get an opportunity to listen to the young people present, teach and form them in the Gospel, and ultimately send them towards their vocation and mission in the world.”

Legal/Policy Updates

Contraception – The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved an oral contraceptive, known as Opill, to be distributed over the counter for the first time. A statement from Bishop Barron objected to the decision, noting that this approval ignored safety concerns, which the FDA itself previously acknowledged.

Endangering Infant Health – The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) updated their website to endorse "chestfeeding", in which men who identify as women imitate the practice of breastfeeding their infants. Medical professionals opposing the change noted that certain hormonal drugs, used to help the men produce milk, can be harmful to infants.

Courts – A North Carolina woman who "detransitioned" after undergoing "Gender Affirming Care" (GAC) to appear as a man filed suit against the medical providers who aided in those practices. This lawsuit is the first of its kind in the state and is a significant sign of further legal disputes which could protect future generations against the harms of GAC. A federal appeals court ruled in favor of the Indianapolic Catholic school that fired an employee over her same-sex "marriage".

States – The Louisiana legislature overrode the governor's veto to ensure that a law banning GAC for minors would take effect in January of 2024. The governor of North Carolina vetoed three bills that had attempted to legally recognize biological sex in various settings. Virginia released a new set of model policies for public schools which more closely reflect the truth about human sexuality. While not perfect, the policies represent an improvement in the way schools respect what it means to be a girl or boy, as Virginia's bishops noted in their response. A Kansas judge upheld the enforcement of a state law requiring driver's licenses to reflect an individual's biological sex.

International Medicine – A group of 21 doctors from around the world, including Finland, Norway, and France, wrote an open letter warning of the harmfulness of GAC in opposition to medical associations' misleading support for the set of practices.

International Sports – After a female-identifying male cyclist won an official women's cycling event in May, cycling's international governing body updated its regulations to protect women's cycling against the competitive advantages of trans-identifying men if they have undergone male puberty. It joins the governing bodies of swimming and track and field in holding this policy. World Aquatics, however, set up an "Open" category aside from the Men's and Women's categories for future events that would allow men and women to race against each regardless of how they identified.